One thing budgets and diets have in common is that we tend to break both around the holidays. Even those who have been frugal all year tend to go a bit crazy when the holiday decorations are up.
According to the National Retail Foundation (NRF), the average American will spend $1,048 throughout the holiday season in 2019. Food, decorations, holiday delights, and, of course, gifts are all included in this amount. According to the NRF study, respondents intended to spend $659 on gifts for family, friends, and coworkers, accounting for nearly 63 percent of their total Christmas spending.
Unfortunately, like a holiday cookie binge, all of this buying causes a lot of guilt when the new year begins. According to a 2020 survey from CompareCards, 70% of shoppers had at least one regret about their holiday shopping, and 17% thought they had overspent on gifts.
One strategy for reducing post-holiday stress is to cut back – not just on cookies but also on spending. And, because Christmas presents are the most significant price for most Americans, it makes sense to start with your gift budget when looking for methods to decrease holiday spending. Setting spending boundaries, giving used or homemade gifts, purchasing during sales, and saving on shipping are all excellent ways to keep your expenses in check. So, even if you gain a few pounds over the holidays, you won’t be burdened by debt.
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Ways to Save Money on Holiday Gifts
- Set Limits
Holiday overspending frequently begins innocently enough. For example, you find a lovely sweater that would make an ideal gift for your sister, and even though it’s a little pricy, you decide it’s worth the expense. There is only one present, after all.
The issue is that after spending $80 on your sister’s gift, it only seems fair to spend the same amount on your brother. You don’t want to favor anyone. And so it goes, with facilities for your relatives, in-laws, children, and spouse. And the larger your list, the worse the final total seems.
A significant gift for one person will not usually break the bank, but a substantial advantage for everyone on your list. So you have two options for keeping your expenditures under control. You can either limit the amount you spend on each facility or the number of persons for whom you purchase gifts.
Set a Dollar Limit
Begin by determining your overall budget for holiday gift-giving. Then, divide that figure by the number of persons on your list to get a price limit for each. You can’t go over budget as long as you keep each person’s gift under this limit.